Saturday, May 23, 2009

3M Filtrete Clean Air Tips and Blog Tour

I have allergies and asthma. So I always need to make sure that I have a clean filter so the air in my house is easier to breathe. We actually do use Filtrete filters in our home.

Most of us are aware that outdoor air pollution, such as vehicle exhaust, ozone, dirt, soot and smoke, can be dangerous. However, indoor levels of some pollutants may be two to five times higher than outdoor levels. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has identified indoor air pollution as one of the top five urgent environmental risks to public health .

“Many people don’t realize that their home can be a breeding ground for allergens, such as pollen, dust mite debris, mold spores and other particles that may be airborne. Other things in the air, such as chemicals from everyday household items such as furniture, carpeting, paints and cleaning products, can also contribute to poor indoor air quality. For people who are sensitive to these types of things, irritation of the eyes, nose and throat, headaches, dizziness and fatigue may result,” said Dr. Neil Schachter, M.D., past president of the American Lung Association of the City of New York and author of Life and Breath. “A ‘home health check-up’ combined with some simple changes can help make your home a healthier place to live.

Follow these tips from Dr. Neil Schachter to give your home a healthier boost:

1. Avoid cleaning products with ammonia and chlorine – Ammonia and chlorine are volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which can irritate the respiratory tract in people who are sensitive to these chemicals. They can cause watery eyes and sore throats and even can trigger coughing and shortness of breath. Choose milder yet effective cleaning aids like those that use baking soda, vinegar, hydrogen peroxide and citrus oils.

2. Houseplants...a clean air ally – Common indoor houseplants, such as bamboo plants, English ivy and peace lily, can provide a natural way to help fight against rising levels of indoor air pollution by absorbing some potentially harmful gases. A six-inch potted green plant can clean a room of excess carbon dioxide in eight hours .

3. Lay area rugs instead of wall-to-wall carpeting – Wall-to-wall carpeting can attract and hold indoor dirt, pollen, pet hair and mold spores and many contain chemicals. Vacuuming can remove some surface dirt, but often, the vacuum can actually push pollutants deeper into carpet fibers. Area rugs are best since they can be picked up and cleaned thoroughly.

4. Use high performance air filters – Use a high performance filter, like the Filtrete 1” Advanced Allergen Filter from 3M, to help capture particles such as pollen, smoke, dust mite debris and pet dander from the air that passes through the filter. Be sure to change your filter at the start of every season. Test your knowledge of indoor air quality facts and blow away some fictions by playing Clean Air Fact or Fiction at

5. Restrict your furry friends – People who are allergic to cats and dogs are actually allergic to the dander that pets shed. To help minimize exposure to pet dander, keep pets out of the bedroom and especially off the bed.

6. Turn up the air conditioning – Air conditioners not only cool the air in your home, they can also help reduce humidity levels. During the warm months of the year, turn up the air conditioner to help keep humidity levels lower, which can help keep mold from growing.

7. Turn off the humidifier – Room air humidifiers are moisture-generating sources that can spread bacteria, mold spores and chemical deposits into the air in your home. Keep relative humidity between 30% and 50% to help prevent mold growth.

8. Leave shoes outside – Avoid bringing contaminated outdoor pollutants indoors by removing your shoes before entering the home. Wearing shoes indoors can track particles that can become airborne, including animal dander, mold spores, pollen and bacteria.

A recognized leader in research and development, 3M produces thousands of innovative products for dozens of diverse markets. 3M’s core strength is applying its more than 40 distinct technology platforms – often in combination – to a wide array of customer needs. With $24 billion in sales, 3M employs 79,000 people worldwide and has operations in more than 60 countries.

Make sure you sign up for the Clean Air Club as well
Thanks for your interest in the 3M Filtrete Blog Tour. Congratulations – you have

We would really appreciate your help in posting a blog within that time frame. If you will not be able to blog by May 22, please let me know and we can work something out.

If you could please be sure to link to when posting – we would appreciate it. This is our clients homepage with more details on 3M Filtrete filters and the Clean Air Club. You will also be able to hear a podcast of Dr. Schachter’s “home health check-up” tips on the Filtrete website, which may be helpful for your blog posting. I’ve also included the Filtrete logo and a document with Dr. Schachter’s tips that we hope you will find helpful. Also, if you don’t mind, we’d love for you to link to as well!

This post was written for Mom Central.

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freshindoorairqualityguru said...

Great, informative article on indoor air pollutants and solutions for controlling or eliminating these pests. It's sad that most people take this top-5 public concern so, it's up to concerned bloggers like us, to paint a realistic picture of the dangerous long-term health effects of indoor air pollution on the human body.

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